Alpine Dance Academy in Frisco presents Spring Recitals | SummitDaily.com

Alpine Dance Academy in Frisco presents Spring Recitals

One hundred forty-eight dancers from the ages of 3 to 18 will be showcasing their talents in Alpine Dance Academy's Spring Recital. The students will play everything from munchkins to lions, tigers and bears in the first performance of "The Land of Oz," to dancing to the iconic tunes of The Beatles in the second act "Let It Be."

The recital will be Saturday, May 14 at the Riverwalk Center in Breckenridge at 6 p.m., with doors opening at 5 p.m. Admission is $15 for adults, $10 for students and 4 and under are free.

ACT 1

"The Land of Oz" is an original production by the Academy with inspiration taken from "The Wizard of Oz," "The Wiz" and "Wicked." Each of the instructors at the dance studio helped create the scenes to fit their classes, and a script read by a narrator transitions the story through its different performances.

"All of our staff picked something that they wanted to do for the story," said Kelly Monahon, director of Alpine Dance Academy.

The traditional characters of Dorothy, Tinman and Scarecrow will be featured throughout the show, with the pre-kindergarten classes portraying Toto. The Acro class will act as the lions, tigers and bears, and the audience can expect plenty of munchkins in Munchkinland. Two of Alpine's instructors are using their tap classes to portray the tornado that takes Dorothy to another land.

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"There are so many wonderful moments in 'The Land of Oz,'" Monahon said. "It really highlights the younger kids and the older kids, and it ties them together into one story. Our Level 2 and 3 kids are the munchkins, and they are so excited to be munchkins. It just makes them really a part of something. … It brings out the best in all of our age groups."

The show highlights two of the Academy's Summit High School seniors, Olivia Roy and Kaylin Lilly, as Elphaba the Bad Witch and Glinda the Good Witch.

"For Kaylin and Olivia, this is their culmination; they've worked so hard," Monahon said. "They've both been members of our company for more years than I can remember, and they are so super dedicated to dance that they really shine in these roles."

Another senior, Anakayla Carchi Easterly, plays Evanora, Elphaba's evil older sister who ends up being the Wicked Witch of the East and gets crushed by Dorothy's house. The narrator role is played by senior Cait McCluskie.

"She memorized this huge script I wrote, and she moves the story along," Monahon said. "She has been part of our program for awhile, and she is just such a good actress that we were like, we have to utilize Cait in a role where she can really shine, and she is so good at this role."

The Spring Recital will be the final performance for the seniors at Alpine Dance Academy before heading off to college in the fall.

"I'm going to miss them all very much," she said. "They are all such bright personalities at the studio; they are really an incredible group of kids."

'LET IT BE'

The second act, called "Let It Be," will showcase every class that Alpine offers to music of The Beatles, from ballet, tap, jazz, modern, hip hop and more. It will feature several fusion pieces that combine different levels and styles of dance, including a performance of "Blackbird" that will be sung by Kids Voice and Voice 4/5 while Ballet 5 dances, as well as a modern piece with the youngest and oldest levels performing to "Here Comes the Sun."

At the beginning of the year, instructors at Alpine will get input from the seniors on what they'd like their last performance theme to be. Last year, the seniors picked New York Broadway. This year, one of the seniors mentioned her favorite band of all time was The Beatles.

"Then I started talking to people, and The Beatles have really had a profound impact on a lot of people," Monahon said. "Whether it's one song that you remember from your childhood — for me, it was one song my dad used to sing to me before going to bed at night … but for everybody, The Beatles have touched their lives in some way."

Putting together an entire act around one band is usually difficult, Monahon said, but The Beatles have such a wide variety of materials, it was easy to pair songs with multiple styles of dance. She said the students were all eager and excited to perform songs from the iconic group.

"You wouldn't think that a first-grader would even know who The Beatles were, but our parents have taught our kids well," she said. "We tell them after Christmas what the show is going to be about … we told them, 'OK, the second half is the biggest, most popular, most famous, most long-lasting band ever.' And right away a couple of the kids were like, 'The Beatles?' … I was thinking they were going to be like 'Justin Bieber?'"

Both acts of the Spring Recital will showcase every student from the studio in all of the different styles of dance that Alpine offers. The students have spent the last few months preparing for this particular show.

"It's a pleasure to work with them," Monahon said. "They come to the studio — even from our little preschoolers all the way through our seniors — they come to our studio, they want to learn, they want to work, and they just have the best attitude about it. It makes them shine."

IF YOU GO

What: Alpine Dance Academy Spring Recital

When: Saturday, May 14; doors open at 5 p.m., show starts at 6 p.m.

Where: Riverwalk Center, 150 W Adams Ave., Breckenridge

Cost: Admission is $15 for adults, $10 for students and 4 and under are free